Congress extends wind production tax credit in fiscal cliff deal

All companies that begin construction of wind power plants in 2013 will be eligible for the wind energy production tax credit, which was extended as a part of the fiscal cliff legislation that passed Tuesday.

That’s even more generous than the credit in place in 2012, where developers had to go on line and produce power before they were eligible for the 2.2 cents per kilowatt hour they get for the electricity they produce. That will likely keep the wind development gold rush going nationwide.

But in Idaho, where a state sales tax rebate ended and where utilities have turned hostile, the rush is likely still to remain over. Projects in Idaho won’t compete with those in states without a sales tax and where utility companies are at least neutral.

A couple of projects, caught up in legal action with Idaho Power, still could be completed if the developers win in court.

Among the other provisions that will help renewable energy, the bill included tax breaks for producers of cellulosic and algae-based biofuels, companies that blend biodiesel and other alternative fuels, electric motorcycles and energy efficiency investments. Energy developers and others also are helped by a one-year extension of added 50% bonus depreciation on project investments and a two-year extension of the 20% R&D tax credit.

Wind developers tell me Idaho utilities' stance on wind will change once major transmission lines are completed in the next five years. Then the utilities that will own the lines will have the incentive to sign up as many generators of green power as they can so they can get the wheeling fees, which are charged for carrying power over their lines.

But a strong voice of opposition has developed here, especially in eastern Idaho, where neighbors of wind plants complain about noise, aesthetics, wildlife impacts and even health. A major project south of Twin Falls was dropped after the Bureau of Land Management raised major concerns over its impacts on sage grouse.

The American Wind Energy Association, which had lobbied hard for the extension, said the decision will save to 37,000 jobs and to revive business at nearly 500 manufacturing facilities across the country. Wind manufacturers left Idaho when the industry left.

Forty-four percent of all new electrical generating capacity built in America in 2012 was wind, leading even natural gas, which accounted for 30 percent.

Congress breaks wind, and it smells great...

Despite all the boring repeat posturing behind distorted statistics of dispairity, Congress at least had the common sense to continue the tax break for developing our great wind power. This incentive program pays off in clean power, but will also eventually collect moretaxes from the jobs spinoffs than would be collected without the break.
Good start...

Doing nothing for Idahoans.

Otter needs to take the Idaho Power execs to task for not allowing more of this to be done in Idaho through their making things difficult. There is no reason Idaho is so far behind in creating clean energy...There are abundant resources available, but nothing but phat politicians and Idaho Power execs.

People in Idaho will pay higher prices and have less opportunity.

Idaho Power and the IPCU are worse than legislature itself, when it comes to thievery.

Yhea!

More free stuff. It is rare when one decision can make ratepayers and taxpayers grab their ankles - leave it to this bunch to figure out a way.

40%

… of America's new electrical generating capacity built in 2012 was wind. But not here in Ideeho. We're taking our country back … to around 1952. We may be just about the dumbest state the Union, but we cling to our principles.

Iduho Republicans favor tax breaks for every business but wind!

RE: Your observation that "We may be just about the dumbest state the Union, but we cling to our principles."
Yes, Butch clings to his principles like flies do to feces...

Green bottles?

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Apple users, run the Gig of RAM your PC needs to have and read the dumb tech white papers, wrinkle your forehead and buy more food and toilet paper with the difference. The internet is a piece of junk anyway and your cats know this.

dumb states

Perhaps you ought to move to one of the smarter states?

I hear Washington just voted in legal weed. Maybe that fits right in with your liberal, "avoid 1952" visions.

Maybe California for you? I suggest avoiding BANKRUPT Stockton and San Bernadino though.

Or maybe the political state of Ohio? Unless you have kids in school, I read Ohio's Monroe School district is bankrupt too.

Pennsylvania has been around since the beginning. THey must ALL be smart right? Skip over Harrisburg, their capital, unless you are a lawyer of course able to help the city through their insolvency.

If you don't mind the drive try Connecticut. They are so smart they have made some really tough gun laws for themselves. Don't worry about the recent news, you and your family will be safe.

Florida is LOADED with smart people. Takes them a while to count ballots, but they must be smart.

But considering your name is Webfoot, you will probably like the SMART people of Louisiana.

Nothing is holding you back WF. You are obviously smart enough to figure that out.
Bon Voyage!

Altered Dumb States by Pimp2

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Apple users, run the Gig of RAM your PC needs to have and read the dumb tech white papers, wrinkle your forehead and buy more food and toilet paper with the difference. The internet is a piece of junk anyway and your cats know this.